Libor Pesek

Biography

Born: 1933  
Libor Pesek had one of the most important international careers of any Czech conductor during the later decades of the 1900s. Although he began cutting back his activities at the turn of the century, he remains active after stepping down from permanent positions. He is a particular advocate of the music of Josef Suk and Vitezslav Novák.

He attended the Prague Academy of Music, where he was a member of the conducting class of Vaclav
Read more Smetacek, the leading Czech conductor of the mid-century years. However, Smetacek's heavy conducting schedule -- including copious guest conducting -- meant that the professor was away often. (Pesek recalls that his classmate, Zdenek Kosler, coined the joke that went the rounds: "I'm self-taught as a conductor because I was a student of Professor Smetacek.") (Pesek says that as a result of this experience he decided not to teach: "It would have been unfair, as I would have missed three out of four lessons every week."

Instead, he credits the absences from Smetacek's class as forming his technique, because it gave him and his classmates time to attend the rehearsals of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra led by Karel Ancerl, an orchestral perfectionist with a gift for and habit of giving clear explanations to the orchestra of what he wanted and what he was doing. Pesek also credits Ancerl with giving the Czech Philharmonic its highest standards since its golden era under Vaclav Talich. In addition, Ancerl thought it important to give his orchestra exposure to the great conductors of his time, so he brought in as guest conductors, such maestros as George Szell, Charles Münch, Erich Kleiber, and Sir John Barbirolli, all of whom the students had a chance to observe at work.

Pesek graduated in 1956 and immediately set up an ensemble called Prague Chamber Harmony, which he led, took on tours, and recorded with. From this start, he rose through the ranks of small and provincial orchestras: The Sebastian Orchestra, the North Bohemia Orchestra in Teplice, and the Chamber Philharmonic in Pardubice. He led the last of these from 1970 to 1977 and brought it to a nationally recognized high standard. He also worked with the Dvorak Chamber Orchestra and conducted the Frysk Orkester of Leeuwardenu, Netherlands.

During this period, he had the first opportunity to conduct the Czech Philharmonic, in 1972. In 1981 he was appointed permanent conductor of the Czech Philharmonic, while frequently guest conducting throughout Europe, North America, and Japan. He also was, briefly, the conductor of the Slovak Philharmonic. In 1987, he became the Principal Conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, in England. He stepped down from his position with the Czech Philharmonic in 1990. However, at that time he kept his musical ties to Prague by becoming principal guest conductor of the Prague Symphony Orchestra. He toured extensively, and appeared as guest conductor with many major orchestras and at the leading music festivals. He resigned from the Royal Liverpool Orchestra in 1997, expressing an intention to slow down the pace of his professional life. The orchestra named him lifetime conductor laureate, which will allow him to conduct four weeks a year.

Pesek has recorded prolifically, making well over forty recordings for the Czech companies Supraphon and Panton alone. In addition, he recorded with the international companies Erato, EMI, CBS, and Virgin Classics. The latter company recorded him with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic in a series including exceptional performances of tone poems by Suk and Novak.

Pesek has received numerous honors, including the Czech Classic Prize and an Honorary Knighthood of the British Empire. Read less
Novak: Slovak Suite / Pesek, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic
Release Date: 06/10/1997   Label: Erato  
Catalog: 45251   Number of Discs: 1
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Dvorák Cycle Vol 5 - Stabat Mater / Pesek, Prague Symphony Orchestra
Release Date: 09/30/2008   Label: Arthaus Musik  
Catalog: 102143   Number of Discs: 1
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Dvorak: Sacred Music / Popp, Protschka, Belohlavek, Altrichter, Pesek
Release Date: 07/26/2011   Label: Arthaus Musik  
Catalog: 107512   Number of Discs: 3
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Dvorak - Masterworks / Pesek, Belohlavek, Altrichter
Release Date: 01/31/2012   Label: Arthaus Musik  
Catalog: 107513   Number of Discs: 3
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There are 76 Libor Pesek recordings available.

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Biography

Born: 1933  
Libor Pesek had one of the most important international careers of any Czech conductor during the later decades of the 1900s. Although he began cutting back his activities at the turn of the century, he remains active after stepping down from permanent positions. He is a particular advocate of the music of Josef Suk and Vitezslav Novák.

He attended the Prague Academy of Music, where he was a member of the conducting class of Vaclav
Read more
WORKS ALBUMS
TITLE/COMPOSER
LABEL
A Midsummer Night's Dream Op. 64, ACT ONE: You spotted snakes with double tongues (Fairies)
War Requiem, Op.66: V. Agnus Dei
Folksong Arrangements: The Salley Gardens
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Dawn
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Dawn
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Sunday Morning
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Sunday Morning
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Moonlight
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Moonlight
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Storm
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Storm
Sinfonia da Requiem Op. 20: I. Lacrymosa (Andante ben misurato) -
Sinfonia da Requiem Op. 20: II. Dies irae (Allegro con fuoco) -
Sinfonia da Requiem Op. 20: III. Requiem aeternam (Andante molto tranquillo)
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Dawn
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Sunday Morning
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Moonlight
4 Sea Interludes, Op. 33a: Storm
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Theme: Allegro maestoso e largamente (full orchestra - woodwind - brass - strings - percussion - full orchestra)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Woodwind: Variation A: Presto (flutes & piccolo)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Woodwind: Variation B: Lento (oboes)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Woodwind: Variation C: Moderato (clarinets)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Woodwind: Variation D: Allegro con marcia (bassoons)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Strings: Variation E: Brillante, alla polacca (violins)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Strings: Variation F: Meno mosso (violas)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Strings: Variation G: L'istesso tempo (cellos)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Strings: Variation H: Cominciando lento ma poco a poco accel. al Allegro (double basses)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Strings: Variation I: Maestoso (harp)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Brass: Variation J: L'istesso tempo (horns)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Brass: Variation K: Vivace (trumpets)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34), Brass: Variation L: Allegro pomposo (trombones & tuba)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Percussion - Variation M: Moderato (percussion)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Fugue: Allegro molto - Con slancio (L'istesso tempo) (full orchestra)
Violin Concerto No.1, Sz.36: I. Andante sostenuto
Violin Concerto No.1, Sz.36: II. Allegro giocoso
Violin Concerto No.2 in B Minor, Sz.112: I. Allegro non troppo
Violin Concerto No.2 in B Minor, Sz.112: II. Andante tranquillo
Violin Concerto No.2 in B Minor, Sz.112: III. Allegro molto
Symphony No. 7 in D Minor, B.141, Op.70: I. Allegro maestoso
Symphony No. 7 in D Minor, B.141, Op.70: II. Poco adagio
Symphony No. 7 in D Minor, B.141, Op.70: III. Scherzo (Vivace)
Symphony No. 7 in D Minor, B.141, Op.70: IV. Allegro
Symphony No. 8 in G Major, B.163, Op.88: I. Allegro con brio
Symphony No. 8 in G Major, B.163, Op.88: II. Adagio
Symphony No. 8 in G Major, B.163, Op.88: III. Allegretto grazioso - Molto vivace
Symphony No. 8 in G Major, B.163, Op.88: IV. Allegro, ma non troppo
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': I. Adagio - Allegro molto
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': II. Largo
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': III. Scherzo (Molto vivace)
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': IV. Allegro con fuoco
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': IV. Allegro con fuoco
Violin Concerto No.1, Sz.36: I. Andante sostenuto
Violin Concerto No.1, Sz.36: II. Allegro giocoso
Czech Suite, B.93, Op.39: I. Allegro moderato
Czech Suite, B.93, Op.39: II. Allegro grazioso
Czech Suite, B.93, Op.39: III. Allegro giusto
Czech Suite, B.93, Op.39: IV. Andante con moto
Czech Suite, B.93, Op.39: V. Presto
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: I. Andante con moto
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: II. Allegro
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: III. Moderato (alla polacca)
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: IV. Andante
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: V. Allegro
Piano Concerto No. 1 in F Sharp Minor, Op.1: I. Vivace
Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor Op. 1: II. Andante
Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor Op. 1: III. Allegro vivace
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Introduction - Allegro vivace
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation I - Precedente
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Tema - L'istessa tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation II - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation III - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation IV - Piů vivo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation V - Tempo precedente
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation VI - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation VII - Meno mosso, a tempo moderato
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation VIII - Tempo I
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation IX - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation X
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XI - Moderato
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XII - Tempo di Minuetto
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XIII - Allegro
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XIV - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XV - Piů vivo. Scherzando
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XVI - Allegretto
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XVII
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XVIII - Andante cantabile
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XIX - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XX - Un poco piů vivo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXI - Un poco piů vivo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXII - Un poco piů vivo - alla breve
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXIII - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXIV - A tempo un poco meno mosso
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': I. Adagio - Allegro molto
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': II. Largo
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': III. Scherzo (Molto vivace)
Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, B.178, Op.95 'From the New World': IV. Allegro con fuoco
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: I. Andante con moto
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: II. Allegro
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: III. Moderato (alla polacca)
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: IV. Andante
American Suite, B.190, Op.98b: V. Allegro
I. Molto allegro
II. Andante
III. Menuetto: Allegretto
IV. Allegro assai
Concerto for violin and orchestra (cpted. Milos Stedron & Leos Faltus: 1988): Con sordini
Concerto for violin and orchestra (cpted. Milos Stedron & Leos Faltus: 1988): Allegro
Concerto for violin and orchestra (cpted. Milos Stedron & Leos Faltus: 1988): Maestoso
I. Andante
II. Adagio
III. Allegro
IV. Vivo
I. Andante
II. Allegretto
I. Kozich
II. Kalamajka
III. Trojky
IV. Silnice
V. Rozek
I. Con moto
II. Adagio
III. Allegretto
IV. Con moto, allegro
Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor Op. 1: I. Vivace
Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor Op. 1: II. Andante
Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor Op. 1: III. Allegro vivace
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Introduction - Allegro vivace
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation I - Precedente
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Tema - L'istessa tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation II - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation III - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation IV - Piů vivo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation V - Tempo precedente
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation VI - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation VII - Meno mosso, a tempo moderato
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation VIII - Tempo I
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation IX - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation X
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XI - Moderato
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XII - Tempo di Minuetto
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XIII - Allegro
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XIV - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XV - Piů vivo. Scherzando
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XVI - Allegretto
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XVII
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XVIII - Andante cantabile
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XIX - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XX - Un poco piů vivo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXI - Un poco piů vivo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXII - Un poco piů vivo - alla breve
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXIII - L'istesso tempo
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Variation XXIV - A tempo un poco meno mosso
I. Allegro
II. Adagio
III. Rondo: Allegretto
Symphonie espagnole Op. 21: I. Allegro non troppo
Symphonie espagnole Op. 21: II. Scherzando (Allegro molto)
Symphonie espagnole Op. 21: III. Intermezzo (Allegretto non troppo)
Symphonie espagnole Op. 21: IV. Andante
Symphonie espagnole Op. 21: V. Rondo (Allegro)
Violin Concerto in A minor B108 (Op. 53): I. Allegro ma non troppo - Quasi moderato
Violin Concerto in A minor B108 (Op. 53): II. Adagio ma non troppo
Violin Concerto in A minor B108 (Op. 53): III. Finale (Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Theme: Allegro maestoso e largamente (full orchestra - woodwind - brass - strings - percussion - full orchestra)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Woodwind
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Strings
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Brass
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Percussion - Variation M: Moderato (percussion)
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell Op. 34): Fugue: Allegro molto - Con slancio (L'istesso tempo) (full orchestra)
4 Sea Interludes Op. 33a: Dawn
4 Sea Interludes Op. 33a: Sunday Morning
4 Sea Interludes Op. 33a: Moonlight
Sinfonia da Requiem Op. 20: I. Lacrymosa (Andante ben misurato) -
Sinfonia da Requiem Op. 20: II. Dies irae (Allegro con fuoco) -
Sinfonia da Requiem Op. 20: III. Requiem aeternam (Andante molto tranquillo)
I. Allegro fantastico - Allegro appassionato ?
II. Tempo del principio - Allegro appassionato - Agitato ?
III. Tempo del principio - Molto appassionato, ma non troppo allegro
I. Largo lugubre - Appassionato doloroso - Tempo del principio ?
II. Meno (largo), molto tranquillo ?
III. Grandioso
Má vlast: I. Vysehrad
Dvorak: Má vlast, JB 1:112: II. Vltava
Má vlast: III. Sárka
Má vlast: IV. Z ceských luhu a háju
Má vlast: V. Tábor
Má vlast: VI. Blaník
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: I. Allegro
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: I. Allegro
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: II. Andante sostenuto e molto cantabile
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: II. Andante sostenuto e molto cantabile
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: III. Scherzo: Allegro feroce
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: III. Scherzo: Allegro feroce
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: IV. Finale: Allegro con brio
Symphony No. 4 in D Minor, B.41, Op.13: IV. Finale: Allegro con brio
Concerto in D Major, Op. 77: I. Allegro non troppo
Concerto in D Major, Op. 77: II. Adagio
Concerto in D Major, Op. 77: III. Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo vivace
Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 26: I. Vorspiel : Allegro moderato
Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 26: II. Adagio
Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 26: III. Finale : Allegro energico
Concerto in D, Op. 77: I. Allegro non troppo
Concerto in D, Op. 77: II. Adagio
Concerto in D, Op. 77: III. Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo vivace


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